As the raging fire that is social media continues to grow with each passing day, Bristol punk four-piece The Pleasure Dome use their new single “Pretty Picture” to shed some light on the importance of self-love — albeit in a slightly cynical and sarcastic way.
With a welsh vein running through their core – Bobby (vocals and guitar) from the North and Loz (bass) from the South met in Bristol through the music scene saw friends starting bands such as Heavy Lungs. Bobby then revisited some of his first loves (The Strokes and The Libertines) started channelling a no-frills sound into his music with words influenced by anxiety, working overtime, relationships and smoking. Soon they were joined by their friends Hari from Cornwall and Giuseppe from Italy.
With sonic influences tying into acts such as Viagra Boys, IDLES, and Shame, The Pleasure Dome fit in comfortably with their roaring guitars, speak-singing vocals and mathematical percussion while calling out society and its backwards ways.
Touching on the subject of the quick-fix mentality of social media and its superficial tendencies, “Pretty Picture” highlights the efforts made to hide insecurities and the truth behind a photo or post, with its almost patronising chorus of “pretty picture, with all your seashells in a row”. “Self-love is important”, the band share. “It’s important for our mental health, our relationships, and even to our dreams and ambitions. Sometimes you wonder if anyone will love you, first love yourself.”
Questioning the tactics of the social media users, they continue: “Pretty Picture” is inspired by everything from the nursery rhyme, ‘Mary Mary Quite Contrary’ to Show Me The Body, Metronomy’s album ‘Nights Out’ and The Beatles song ‘Taxman’ – it presents the idea of people’s desire to share their lives on social media, with their superficial sand castles soon lost to the scrolling tide. Their carefully crafted content is gone in a moment – does this impact the self, is it healthy, is personal social media contrary to the reason we do it? It explores these ideas of narcissism by looking inwards at the self, the way we give meaning to our own image based on our experience, how we can be blind to aspects of our personality which are clear to others.”
“Pretty Picture” is the bands best song yet, and I say that after each one they release. They are on an upwards trajectory, and if they keep making records this catchy and this massive, they have a very bright future ahead.
Hear a lot more about The Pleasure Dome’s journey so far in their interview with Brian in his Goth Kitchen, from September 2020.